My oldest son has a stuffed puppy dog. She’s been with our family six years come December. She was a one of the Christmas gifts he received that very first year he was born. He was barely two months old, not even big enough to sit up yet. My aunt wrapped him up in a little bag and presented his gift when all of the other children’s gifts were given. My husband and I nodded politely, said thank you, and then set the bag to the side with all of the other presents our son had received.
We didn’t think anything of it. I mean, he was not even big enough to eat baby food. We knew that it was a polite gesture and as brand new parents, we appreciated every single gesture at that point. We figured it was one of those gifts that we would take home and then, over time, it would inevitably make its way to the donate pile and that would be that. That was [almost] six years ago. That little puppy dog is still here. In fact, up until September she still went everywhere we went. She may not go in the store with us or get out of the car at the playground, but she was in the car when we were finished. Every. single. time.
Noah has made that puppy his security object. He has carried her everywhere…she went to K3 with him every single day. She lived in his backpack for a big majority of his days in K4; and if I would allow it, I’m sure she’d be living in a little wooden cubby in his Kindergarten classroom.
She is battered and bruised. She has “war wounds” from hours upon hours of playing, snuggling and being drug around by her ears (which are somehow still intact). Once when we went to Build a Bear the lady who does all of the animal stuffing offered to stuff Puppy Dog for free and Noah wouldn’t have it. He said she was “perfect just the way she was.”
Friends, isn’t that how God feels about us? That we are ENOUGH for Him just as we are?
Christ tells us in Matthew 11:28
Come to me, all who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest.
He doesn’t say “Come to me, but only when you’ve got your makeup on” or “Come to me when you have had enough sleep and you are in a good mood” (thank goodness, because I would probably never be allowed to come near him!). No! He calls to us when we are weary and tired and burdened with the things of this life. When our hearts are heavy with despair, with sadness, with grief, when anxiety…when we just don’t think we can do it anymore.
Still He calls to us.
Just like Noah loves that little puppy, despite all of her imperfections, despite the missing stuffing (guys, seriously…this little puppy has no stuffing in her stomach at all), despite the big crack in his little eyeball…he loves her nonetheless.
And Christ loves you too. Despite the flaws, despite the mess and despite the worst parts of you that no one else ever sees. So today, why don’t you let him?
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